Facing out
I set the target
everyone else
looking in
I am the field commander
of signals and signs
my mitt hand swollen
from 100 mile per hour fastballs
my knees creaking
from 10,000 squats per season
I am Yogi, Pudge, Campy
I am the wall, the backstop, the glue
my head in a cage
controlling the game
controlling the flow
every situation
every moment in time
the pitcher is a wild horse
I soothe him
squat down in the dirt
I am the target
I know the umpires
I can fool them
sometimes with my mind
my right arm is a rifle
my eyes laser beams
I know when the runner is going
I will gun him down
I sweet talk the hitters
get inside their heads
I can fool them too
most times
they are putty in my hands
I own the plate
it is mine
I have studied every nuance
of this game
since I was nine years old
since the very first time I donned
the tools of ignorance